Community Involvement

From Mayor Winton Dalley’s vision, the concept of constructing a bridge of Chinese style to connect two new proposed gardens each side of Dock creek stream was born.

The vision was to build a bridge to connect all the associations between Hurunui and China, our sister District Changping, and Wuhan Province and Rewi Alley.

The significance of this site is that it is the very place where Amberley Resident Rewi Alley was schooled and lived for ten years and contained a flowing stream that would accentuate the establishment of a bridge of connection between Amberley and the area in which Rewi Alley subsequently lived and lived in many provinces of China.

The concept was to design and construct a bridge of Chinese character having an arched format and spanning 6 m. Balustrades were to be of an ornamental character and hand railing shaped to the same arc as the main structure.

The entire structure was constructed off-site using old-fashioned construction methods coupled with modern lamination technique. Steel balustrade in traditional form was welded together off-site then incorporated into the bridge. The fitting of Toughened Glass panels to guard against falling made the bridge compliant with the New Zealand Building Code.

Once complete the bridge was lifted onto previously poured concrete foundations resting on pre-driven piles.

This project was only possible due to the skill, dedication and generosity and many hours voluntary time of the Amberley Lions Club. Their involvement included Carpentry, joinery, steelwork, painting and installation, totalling over 200 hours. The project was also generously supported by several local businesses and generous financial donations from our Friends in China.

The beautiful Garden of Reflection is connected by our Bridge of unity and will be an enduring recognition of our strong relationship with China.


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